Update: Hugo's gained approval, for a three year trial, to expand its restaurant onto the outdoor wharf area at the August meeting of the Manly Independent Assessment Panel. Although this space has been leased by Hugo's for some years, many felt that it should have been maintained as public space.
(You can view the MIAP decision and Conditions at the end of this post)
We all love Hugo's restaurant on Manly Wharf, but is it reasonable for them to expand their operation further onto the public walkway?
A current development application (DA) before Manly Council is seeking approval to expand outdoor seating to the existing public wharf along the south-western side area including three umbrella's, thirty-six seats., alternations and additions to the stairs and enclosure of the area.
At present this are is used by people to sit and eat ice-creams, bask in the sun, as a short-cut when running late for the ferry and as a popular public family seating place.
Manly Wharf is currently undergoing major change with the new Justin Hemmes' Latin-American restaurant to open shortly (next door to the Wharf hotel), and two new restaurants to be added to a new second level in the new year.
Want to know more? Visit Manly Council's website - Development Application 233/2103 and put in a submission by January 3, 2014.Email to: email@example.com
Subject: Development Application 233 / 2013
Attention: To The General Mananger
What do you think? Make a comment and/or complete our poll below.
For some 18 months the Department of Education and Communities (DEC) and the Royal Far West (RFW) have been negotiating over a piece of land which the Departments owns, right in the centre of the RFW proposed redevelopment site.
Locals believe this provides an excellent opportunity for a land swap providing much needed extra space for the exploding Manly Village Public School which has expanded to over 600 enrolments this year (on a site which is ideal for 500 students).
However negotiations with the Royal Far West have stalled with the groups failing to come to an agreement on the value of the DEC’s land.
Mr Dean White, Director of Public Schools NSW, has worked closely with the community to try to find a solution to the immediate lack of space crisis facing the primary school with estimated enrolments of up to 700 students expected in 2015, meaning an additional five classrooms will be needed.
While admitting that the land swap with RFW is unlikely to be resolved in the near future, Mr White’s Department has looked at a number of options including changing the boundaries of the catchment area for students; the use of the nearby Community Centre; and placing demountables on the playground or staff car park.
The best immediate solution would seem to be the change in the catchment boundaries, which would protect the future of the Community Centre and the amenity of students at the school. The P&C also shares this view. The Minister is expected to make an announcement over the next two weeks which direction will be taken.
In the meantime the RFW has announced that it proposes to proceed with its $45m Centre of Excellence on the site of the Elsie Hill flats (next door to the Community Centre) while continuing its operations in existing buildings until the new Centre is complete.
Mr White confirmed that the DEC is looking at leasing space in the new Centre and combining staff with the RFW, which would be a world first.
With regards to the future of the land in the centre of the RFW site he said the Department was “in no hurry”. “Our objective remains to find the best solution for both the RFW school and the Manly Village School”, he said.
Mr White added there was no interest in the proposal by the RFW that DEC support an additional storey being approved for the new Centre with the bottom floor being leased for 5-10 years to the Public School next door. This has also been rejected by the P & C and by Manly Council which recently lodged a new local environment plan (LEP) for the site reducing the height limited to below that which was approved on 18 April 2013 by the Planning Assessment Panel (PAC) under the rules of the previous State Government.
The Royal Far West has four years to start on the redevelopment of its site before the current DA expires.
While the recent Council resolution to delay lodging a development application (DA) to proceed with the controversial Oval car park has been welcomed by the Independent Councillors Candy Bingham, Barabara Aird, Hugh Burns and Cathy Griffin, it is clear that the 5-4 deadlock will take some time to resolve.
A series of workshops have been scheduled to give the Councillors time to work through the issues. Clr Candy Bingham, while pleased by the delay, questions whether the correct process has been followed.
“In my opinion the process has been flawed from the start. Although the Manly 2015 Vision has been on Council’s agenda since 2008, the Good for Manly group were the only Council candidates who took a stand on the Oval car park in the lead-up to the Council elections in 2012.
“Nowhere in the Liberal campaign materials was the Oval car park or Manly 2015 mentioned, even though the project had been put on hold by the previous Council,” she said.
Without any resolution to proceed, the newly-elected Liberal dominated Council launched the 2015 Vision and in particular the construction of a car park under Manly Oval.
This month, following a mixed response from the Office of Local Government regarding the capital expenditure of the project, the Council administration recommended that the car park move to a DA, even before any design plans had been developed, or discussed by Councillors or the community.
During its term, the Council has remained divided over the car park proposal. The Mayor, Jean Hay, has responded to concerns about the lack of community consultation by stating that “this is the most consulted project Manly Council has ever done …”. However it is the Council’s response, or lack of it, to community feedback and questions that has caused major concern. As has the Council’s refusal to provide copies of relevant due diligence reports to Councillors.
“The lack of transparency is a furphy being promoted by the opponents of the Plan,” according to the Mayor at a recent Council meeting.
Thousands in the community would disagree. As would the nine Resident Precinct groups which still have not had their concerns and questions regarding the financial viability of the project addressed.
In the meantime the Councillor workshops will provide a truce for now, with both sides hoping that the other will ‘come to their senses’ and vote their way.
The likelihood of that happening is as remote as finding a parking spot in Manly during a busy summer weekend.
The Manly Hospital Community Advisory Group, established by Local Member and Premier Mike Baird, would like to hear your views on the proposed use of the Manly Hospital campus site once the hospital is closed in 2018.
Some of the suggestions so far include affordable housing, an art and culture centre, aged care support, drug and alcohol support and rehabilitation and a GP Super Clinic.
Add your views by completing the survey here.
About the new Northern Beaches Hospital
The Northern Beaches Hospital is to be built on a 6.5 hectare site at Frenchs Forest, bounded by Frenchs Forest Road West, Warringah Road, Wakehurst Parkway and The Forest High School
The hospital will have capacity for 423 beds and will deliver surgical, paediatric, obstetric, inpatient mental health services and hold an emergency department.
The NSW Government has committed to commencing construction of the new Northern Beaches Hospital’s Frenchs Forest campus by 2015, with it opening in 2018.
You can find out more by downloading the Fact Sheet below.
UPDATE: The Joint Regional Planning Panel has approved Bupa's 76 bed aged care facility, and Manly Council's community centre at the old Seaforth Tafe site.
An information meeting regarding the proposed new use of the Seaforth TAFE site was held at the Balgowlah RSL on 8th April 2014 by BUPA, who has lodged a development application (DA) to revitalise the old building.
The DA is for a 76 bed nursing home facility, specialist healthcare offices. This follows a memorandum of understanding with Manly Council that BUPA will take over use of the majority of the building on a 99 year lease. The building will also include community space to be run by Manly Council.
Following the presentation there was an extensive question and answer session with the audience of approximately sixty local residents and business people.
The following is a summary of the main issues raised:
The Proposed Use of the Site as an Aged Care Facility.
There was some concern expressed regarding the provision of institutional aged care facilities versus home care. The BUPA representatives acknowledged that this is an issue under consideration in the industry, but that there will still be a need for institutional care.
BUPA also considers that the location is ideal for the proposed use.
BUPA is committed to full restoration of the building to a very high standard, including enhancement of the external facades of the existing building, extensive landscaping and use of solar energy.
The Number of On-Site Car Spaces to be Provided.
Varying information was put forward by audience members regarding the number of existing on-site car spaces that were available on the TAFE site, suggesting a range of 30 - 40 spots..
The plans for the BUPA proposal for the redevelopment of the site include removal of some existing on-site parking, and provision of a total of 20 only on-site car spaces. The BUPA representatives advised that this was consistent with industry standards for this type of development, and they were confident that it would be sufficient.
they also advised that during the negotiations with Manly Council prior to the preparation of the plans Council advised that there was a nil requirement for on-site car parking spaces for the proposed community centre.
Audience members expressed concern at the low number of proposed on-site car spaces on the grounds, that overspill of parking associated with the operation of the proposed development will adversely impact on the limited parking available in the Seaforth business and adjoining residential area.
The Location and Design of the Proposed Parking Area, Service Pick-Up & Deliveries, & Garbage Storage.
Adjoining residents on the northern side of the site were concerned that the location and layout of the parking area and service pick-up and deliveries were not in accordance with the DA for alterations to that area that was prepared and approved by Council, after consultation with a local community committee.
BUPA acknowledged the existence of that approval, but said that they had made the decision to put forward its own proposal.
The Role of Manly Council.
Concern was expressed at what was described as the complete lack of information from Council since its original announcements of the proposed use of the site as a ‘hub’ for community activities, and the fact that the BUPA proposal has been developed to the stage that a formal DA has already been lodged, without any prior community consultation.
BUPA advised that it is not able to speak for the Council, but that it was their understanding that Council had found that it was unable to fund the very extensive work needed to restore the premises to the necessary standards.
BUPA indicated that it is open to consideration of changes to the plans for its proposal if there is strong community feelings on any particular aspect, and that any such concerns should be raised by means of submissions to Council during the forthcoming period that the DA plans will be on exhibition.
You can view BUPA's development application on Manly Council's website- reference: DA 54/2014
UPDATE: Clr Bingham's motion to stop the Oval car park was lost 5 - 4 but the matter has been delayed. A Councillor workshop is to be scheduled to discuss further.
The Office of Local Government (OLG) has now responded to Manly Council's submission to build a $34m car park under Manly Oval.
Late Friday 1st August 2014, Councillors received notice of an Extraordinary Meeting for the following Monday 4th August, to vote on the matter.
There has been no public notification of this extraordinary meeting by Council, which will take place after the scheduled Planning & Strategy Meeting which commences at 7.30pm.
The response from the Office of Local Government (below) is ambiguous enough for either side to state that they are right. For example the Council highlights "..the office of Local Government's capital expenditure criteria have been broadly met" , while those concerned about the project and Good For Manly focus on comments such as "While primary concerns have been addressed, I note the significant complexity and risks associated with the project" and "I would draw the Council's attention to these concerns:
1. the viability of the project .....
2. the ability to achieve long term cost of debt at 5%
3. the potential impact of unforeseen cost increases
The response also says: "It is important to note that the response from the OLG should not be construed to be an endorsement of the Manly Oval Car Park".
The OLG response and the Staff recommendation to proceed with the DA for the car park are below:
Candy Bingham, Deputy Mayor, Northern Beaches Council. Background in marketing, public relations & community engagement. Author of five business books. Former Lady Mayoress of Sydney. Aka Candy Tymson.